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Are over protective parents creating clueless kids?

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A leading figure in education has expressed concern that over protective parents may be creating a generation of kids who are ill-equipped for life. David Hanson is Chief Executive of the Independent Association of Prep Schools, the IAPS, and voiced his thoughts in the Sunday Telegraph ahead of the IAPS Annual Conference, due to take place this week.

Over protective parents

His arguments include the idea that in an effort to protect children from the perils of physical and mental harm, parents are not giving kids they skills they need to survive in the real world. At an extreme level this could translate, for example, into kids who are always driven to school reaching the age of 11 and being unable to cross a road safely alone. He believes that children who are shielded in this way never learn the common sense rules of being a safe pedestrian and are more likely to get injured on the roads as a result.

Protect, lead and let go

He explained: ‘If children from a young age, walk to school with a grown up, they come to instinctively learn about traffic and how to cross the road in a safe manner. To suddenly discover this as a distracted teenager leads to the tragically high injury rate we see in this country.’ He believes that: ‘Parents should first protect, then lead and show and then support and then let go.’

Hanson adds: ‘One can understand why parents are anxious about their children. It’s very hard for them to be even handed and balanced. But sometimes parents put a cotton wool around children because they want to protect them from everything, including physical risks and mental challenges. There is a fear of failure but we actually want children to climb trees, fall out and scratch their knees. We want them to struggle with mental challenges and learn when they don’t achieve what they were hoping for.’

Do you think this is realistic? Does he have a point, or is he over-egging it?

 

 

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About Cally Worden

About Cally Worden

Seasoned freelance writer Cally Worden lives with her family and dog in a quiet corner of rural France. A love of the outdoors, and a fascination with her children's ability to view life with fresh eyes provide the inspiration for much of her work. Cally writes regularly for various websites and UK print publications on subjects as diverse as parenting, travel, lifestyle, and business, and anything that makes her smile.

Website: Cally Worden

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